Thursday, April 2, 2015

First outside ride of the year...

I knew today was going to be a nice day. I'd been looking at the weather forecast all week. It looked like it was going to be unusually warm and warm enough for a bike ride. My plan was if it does end up being as warm as they predict that I'm going to get out to do my first ride of the year outside.

Around 2 pm I had a break in the action and decided to go for a ride. I was pretty happy it was 16 C outside.

It wasn't easy getting ready. My triathlon bike downstairs on the trainer has broken aero bars and if I was to take that bike it could be dangerous. My road bike is in the garage and has a flat tire which I'd have to fix beforehand.

The lazy guy in me was thinking triathlon bike and the safe guy in me was saying road bike. Safety guy won out. I took the time and fixed the flat tire. Then got the tires all pumped up and had the bike ready to go.

On the other hand I was a little disoriented on what to wear. It was warmer than what I was normally training in and had to remember back to what I wear for these conditions. It sounds simple but when you get to my age and have no memory it's not so easy.

I ended up figuring it all out and just as I was fully clothed and ready to get on the bike it started raining. Or at least spitting rain. My first reaction was to wait and hope it clears up and for about 15 minutes I was doing that.

Then I thought to myself "why can't I ride in the rain? It's just water". That was it. I made sure the jacket I put on had some water resistance and I was off on my ride.

This ride was a little humbling. I've been training pretty solid for the past 5  -6  weeks. I've been running, doing weights, Insanity workouts, a couple of trainer rides and I've been feeling strong. I was fully expecting to have just a nice easy ride.

What I wasn't expecting was it was going to be a nice easy ride that kicked the ass out of my legs. Yes, it was a nice easy speed, although I was pushing as hard as I could with my heart rate at the top threshold, and I was feeling muscles that hadn't been used in a while getting sore.

These muscles I've never had sore before. Mostly in the hamstrings and back of the knees and even part of the calfs. I was actually pleasantly shocked about it and was happy I was feeling this.

The reason I was happy is because it made the ride seem more meaningful. As you get in shape it's rare that you get muscle soreness and even when you give it you don't feel anything like it's going to break. But when you are on a ride and your legs feel sore and a little heavy you know you are doing something good for them.

It was also an eye opener about how just being fit in one discipline doesn't carry over to another.

At times I was not enjoying the ride and I did something I rarely do on an hour long bike ride, I looked at my watch a number of times to calculate how much longer it would be until I was finished. Normally an hour long bike ride is a smell the roses type of a ride and seems effortless and time passes.

As luck would have it it didn't rain on me. I did miss my triathlon bike because the areo position is much easier to ride in, it feels like you are lying down and resting. The road bike had my shoulders getting a little sore. But again, all good, I live for the soreness it makes me feel like I'm making progress.

My speed was slower than I thought and faster than I expected. I averaged just over 25 kph and with a big windy seeming to be in my face the entire time and the first ride of the year it wasn't too bad all things considering.

When I got home it felt great to have had a good workout. The other thing that felt great was a hot shower. When you come out from riding and you are a little cool there is nothing like a hot shower. It's like sitting in front of a fireplace after a day of skiing.

It was hard for me to even get out of the shower. So I decided it was a perfect day to do my triathlon body and leg shave. The great thing about shaving your legs is you are multi-tasking. It's not just shaving it's stretching and moving yourself in all sorts of positions to get at the back of your calfs and legs.

Food wise I've been on the straight and narrow. Today was no difference. I am a little depressed as I have not seen any weight gain. It seems I'm plateauing in the 196.6 lb range. Like I set its depressing because I'm working so hard and being so disciplined to do everything right. I so want to get down to the low 180's as soon as possible and at this rate it would take a year and it starts me questioning if it's even possible.

Actually I know it's possible. But I'd have to do the juicing thing again. Which is not a bad thing. I could juice to goal weight and then get back to eating healthy and maintain. It seems that eating healthy is not getting me down to my goal weight or at least not fast enough.

I've heard that as you get older it's harder to lose weight. I kind of believed it and yet didn't want to believe it. I guess I didn't want to believe it because I think all men are created equally and that the body burns calories and it should work the same for all. Now I'm not so sure. It really does feel hard for me to lose weight.

The last time I lost 10 lbs and got down to 190 lbs it was so hard, I ate perfect and did 66 hours of training that month, that I swore I'd never gain weight again because it was so hard to do and I didn't know if I had it in me to make the sacrifices that were required ever again.

Fast forward a year and not only did I gain that 10 lbs back I put on an additional 10 lbs and lost much of my muscle as I wasn't training. So to put that in perspective I had to restart at 210 lbs and now I'm down to 196.6 lbs. Not bad but the amount of work and discipline has been hard and now it's tough to take when you plateau.

Don't think I didn't think about just staying at 210 lbs and throwing in the towel and put my vanity on the shelf and just enjoy beer and food with reckless abandon. The thought didn't just cross my mind, it was a very viable option that I spent a lot of time thinking about.

I think it was the tight pants and thinking I'd have to buy a whole new wardrobe and then the feeling of knowing I feel great when I'm fit and trim that got me motivated to take the step and with things stabilizing in my life with a clear direction the timing was perfect.

It is amazing though how you could be doing all the right things and yet because the scale doesn't show that decent weight loss it's easy to get down on yourself.

Tonight was a big night. Alice made ribs. In the past I just devour them. They are awesome. Today I managed to eat 4 pork ribs and 2 beef ribs and even with those on my plate I couldn't finish them. I definitely have my portion control under control. It was a win and I sure hope it pays off on tomorrows weigh in.

Bike 1:11:04 / 30.30 km

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